Recommendations for the validation of cell-based assays used for the detection of neutralizing antibody immune responses elicited against biological therapeutics

J Pharm Biomed Anal. 2011 Jul 15;55(5):878-88. doi: 10.1016/j.jpba.2011.03.038. Epub 2011 Apr 6.


The administration of biological therapeutics may result in the development of anti-drug antibodies (ADAs) in treated subjects. In some cases, ADA responses may result in the loss of therapeutic efficacy due to the formation of neutralizing ADAs (NAbs). An important characteristic of anti-drug NAbs is their direct inhibitory effect on the pharmacological activity of the therapeutic. Neutralizing antibody responses are of particular concern for biologic products with an endogenous homolog whose activity can be potentially dampened or completely inhibited by the NAbs leading to an autoimmune-type deficiency syndrome. Therefore, it is important that ADAs are detected and characterized appropriately using sensitive and reliable methods. The design, development and optimization of cell-based assays used for detection of NAbs have been published previously by Gupta et al. 2007 [1]. This paper provides recommendations on best practices for the validation of cell-based NAb assay and suggested validation parameters based on the experience of the authors.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Neutralizing / immunology*
  • Antibody Formation*
  • Biological Assay / methods
  • Biological Products / immunology
  • Blood Proteins / chemistry
  • Chemistry, Pharmaceutical / methods
  • Chemistry, Pharmaceutical / standards
  • Humans
  • Immune System
  • Neutralization Tests
  • Pharmaceutical Preparations
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Software


  • Antibodies, Neutralizing
  • Biological Products
  • Blood Proteins
  • Pharmaceutical Preparations